MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- Many republican governors opposed the expansion of Medicaid through the government's Affordable Care Act.
But Michigan's Rick Snyder was not one of them; the governor signed the Medicaid expansion bill Monday and a lakeshore health group is cheering that decision.
Hackley Community Care has a new location in Muskegon, inside the Hackley Professional Center. Linda Juarez says the new center will broaden her agency's effort to serve patients who have little or no health insurance. And also Medicaid and Medicare patients.
"Anyone who does not have access to care-- that is who we are going to focus in on," said Juarez.
The new center has three primary care providers and is able to offer a full scope of health services.
"Acute to chronic disease. We hope to treat everything from the cough to heart disease, and diabetes," said Dr. Wayne Kohn.
The federally qualified health center is just around the corner from an emergency room-- a place where the sick and uninsured often end up.
"They go the emergency room knowing that they will not be turned away," said Juarez.
"I hope we can divert some of the traffic that goes down there to come and see us," said Kohn.
The new center should benefit from the expansion of Medicaid in Michigan next year, as the staff works to build strong patient doctor relationships and improve the health of those who live in Muskegon.
"For your long-term care that relationship is key. I mean it is the most important thing," said Juarez.